16 Women Candidates For Alderman Unite Behind Dislike Of Emanuel Administration

(CBS) — Sixteen women united by a dislike of the Emanuel administration, and who want to become Chicago aldermen, told an enthusiastic crowd on the UIC campus Saturday how they’d remake City Hall, if elected.

The women are running for 14 of the 50 seats on the Council. Two women are challenging the incumbents in the 1st and 10th wards.

Although the forum, at the Jane Addams Hull House Center, was all about sisterhood, they made it clear that being a woman on Chicago’s City Council is not good enough unless she is willing to buck Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

“My sister is wrong on the issues,” said Tara Stamps, who is challenging incumbent Emma Mitts in the 37th Ward. “My sister is a rubber-stamp alderman, flat out. One hundred percent of the time she has voted with not only this mayor but Daley, too, on policies that cripple our people. That’s unacceptable.”

Some have City Hall experience.

“The people may change, and the departments may change, but it’s the same-old same-old,” said Denise Davis, who was chief of staff to the long-time, now retired independent Ald. Helen Shiller (46). “I’m sick of the same-old same-old.”

Some have more difficult fights than others. Maureen Sullivan, a fourth generation Bridgeport resident and co-founder of the Bridgeport Alliance, is running to replace the retiring Ald. James Balczer (11) against Patrick Daley Thompson.

She said she is the first woman to run for the 11th Ward seat and said she is determined to make Thompson sweat.

“For the first time in my lifetime, I am seeing the Daleys work (to win an election),” she said. “Patrick Daley Thompson is knocking on doors, shilling for votes in Bridgeport.”

Several are long-time activists, such as Stamps, who is the daughter of the late, legendary Cabrini-Green housing activist Marion Stamps. Several have high-ranking ties to the Chicago Teachers Union, which has quarreled bitterly with Emanuel.

The women say they are united by an agenda that they will push if elected. They seek an elected school board, economic development focused on the neighborhoods, changes to the tax increment financing system, which they consider unfair, and an administration that benefits all Chicagoans.

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